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Mt. Cammerer hike

Birmingham, AL
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Mt. Cammerer hike

A friend of mine and I are planning on hiking to the Mt. Cammerer fire tower next Tuesday afternoon. We're hoping to be up there by mid-afternoon so we can get some good late-afternoon light for photographs. I'd also love to do some night sky stuff with the tower in the foreground, but that would put us not leaving the tower until well after dark. Does anyone have any experience on this trail after dark? Any recommendations?

ky.boy
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1. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

I would make sure you have agood flashlight with you as well as back up light, the trail is very rocky in spots so youll need to be very careful and pay attention to where you are walking-one other thing especially in that area of the park-timber rattlesnakes become very active from just before dark to after dark so again watch where you are stepping and make plenty of noise as you hike down the trail.Other than that have a great time.

Junktruck

Birmingham, AL
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2. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

Thanks, the rockiness of the trail is what concerned me. We'll both have headlamps as well as a backup handheld light. I'm hoping it will be cool enough by then that the snakes (and other animals) will not be as active.

Chattanooga...
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3. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

I sure wouldn't want to come down Low Gap Trail in the dark, but I guess it would be do-able. Sure would like to see your pictures, though. Good luck, if you try it!

Birmingham, AL
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4. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

Why do you say that? Just due to the condition of the trail?

Chattanooga...
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5. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

Lots of rocks in the upper sections of Low Gap Trail, more rocks and roots in the lower. I've lately moved away from that route to Cammerer as my preferred route just because of the rockiness of it. Like I said, probably do-able, but likely would be slow going.

And just coming away from the 'tower' there are some large rocks that are somewhat tricky to navigate even when you can see well.

I don't mean to scare you off the idea, and I don't have any personal after-dark experience here (or anywhere else for that matter); just cautioning you that it might be a long trip back down.

Birmingham, AL
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6. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

Thanks for the info. You haven't scared us off. We'll call it "educated" us. :) Since neither of us have been on this trail before and we don't have much night hiking experience, I think we will probably leave earlier in the day and try to make it back to the car by (or soon after) dark. As much as I want star trails behind the tower that will have to wait for another trip. Just gives me another reason to make the hike again.

What trail do you use now?

Oh, and as far as my pictures, keep a watch on flickr.com/photos/…. And I'll try to remember to post some on here.

Thanks again!

Edited: 08 October 2010, 13:41
Chattanooga...
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7. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

I start at the Big Creek Ranger station over on the other side and go up Chestnut Branch to the AT, then south on the AT to the Cammerer junction; longer and more climbing, but much more enjoyable, I think.

You do any backpacking? The nearby Mt Sterling has an actual tower that I've climbed at night; there's a backcountry campsite right at the base of it.

You apparently have some gear to do after-dark or near-dark photography. Like I said above, I'd like to see what you come out with. Sounds interesting!

I'll check out your pictures this evening - gotta run right now.

Chattanooga...
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8. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

Oh yeah, you've got some great pictures there! Particularly liked the sunrise ones.

Birmingham, AL
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9. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

Thanks for all the info. We just got back from the hike. Turns out it started raining on us so we couldn't stay late anyway. But I see what you mean about the rocks on Low Gap trail. It was just brutal. Thanks again for your help.

Chattanooga...
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10. Re: Mt. Cammerer hike

"Raining"? What's that?

Seriously, glad you at least got out of there, even if you didn't get the pictures you wanted. I've often wondered what it would be like to spend the night up there (which could get you in a heap of trouble if a ranger caught you!), especially during a lightning storm. But on the other hand, that could get pretty scary!